Readers' Hotline 9/23/13

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Driving around
I’m just wondering why it was okay for town councilman David Young to drive the town police department’s electric car around the Hillsville flea market [with his wife]. Is this practice ethical to use town property? Plenty of people saw it. I’m sure plenty of others would have liked to use it. Isn’t there a policy in the town on equipment being used for personal use?
Editor’s note: Council Member David Young released the following statement after he was asked if he wished to respond. “It has come to my attention that one citizen was concerned and asked Councilman Yonce at the last meeting if I used the electric car in the last flea market/gun show. I did in the capacity as councilman representing the Town of Hillsville. My wife rode with me as any other councilman’s wife should. The vendors were pleased to see the town represented in such a manner. They told me that it was good to see the police working the fields in the VFW, Hundley’s, Bowman’s and the streets on bike and having EMS located throughout the market. I explained that we would like to get the spring flea market to grow and asked if they had any suggestions. Some told me that we should offer the town license now at a reduced rate but only one time reduced for the Memorial Day weekend. That would give the town an idea what to expect and a way to help promote both shows with maybe tour buses and other events. I found this very rewarding and, yes, I did purchase two items from those vendors wanting to help. I can assure this person that my goal is to do my job and represent the Town of Hillsville.”

Cockamamie story
To believe the speed limit was reduced to save lives is to be very gullible. They are after the money. Period. To come up with such a cockamamie story when the speed limit wasn’t fast to begin with is insulting. Maybe they should study how going too slow can cause accidents.

Burned out by school
Just read in the local paper where schools may be deciding to go year around. That’s the problem now. They go too much. They have too long days and get burned out. They need a break. Ever thought about the teachers not being up to par and being some of the problem? If they are really doing their jobs, kids will be learning. Sure isn’t like it used to be. Kids stay burned out. Bless those little ones in kindergarten, first and second grade. That is too long a days for those little ones. They should be lowering the time in school instead of more time.

Road thoughts
I was interested in reading about the new road between Crossroads Institute and the Higher Education center. I agree with the tricky left turn that used to be required to exit. If that is a public road through there that can be traveled at a reasonable speed to eliminate that tricky turn if you come out of Cherry Hill Plaza and turn in to the convenience store there in front of Crossroads, if you can be welcomed to exit through that route, it would be an excellent way to get back to Cranberry Road or back to a reasonable stoplight. Because that exit from the convenience store and Crossroads, if you are going west, is extremely tricky. Wonder if anybody can address that and make sure it is okay to go through there.

Shootings all around
Why does the United States always want to be the conscience of the world? We are trying to solve problems all over the world and going after this guy in Syria because he killed 3,000 of his own people. I don’t understand why the U.S. doesn’t try to solve problems here. As far as people getting killed — right here in the last nine months, 36,000 Americans have been killing each other. Shootings in every city. Americans are killing Americans. You know where the biggest war is? It’s right here. Every day, I turn on the news, two or three killings just in Roanoke alone. There are more Americans killing Americans right here. Yet, those dips in Washington don’t realize that. Solve the problems in this nation right here.
Editor’s note: The Centers for Disease Control in May released its report analyzing U.S. deaths in 2010, its latest available. No such data was available from the center for 2013. Data showed 16,259 U.S. homicides in 2010, which calls into question the total cited by the caller above.

I have a solution to the problem about Syria. Take a neutral island. Put Obama on one end and Assad on the other end. Let the two go at it. If Obama should win, then we will go in and get the weapons. If Assad wins, forget it. It’s over. That would be very simple.

To “hard to believe,” who was making a response to my first call, I was not murmuring about the air conditioning the night I was there because I was only there for a while. I was concerned about the children and teachers that have to put up with that cold place day in and day out. How would “hard to believe” feel if his grandchild came home and you asked why his sleeves on his coat were rolled up and he said it was because “I don’t want to get food on my jacket when I eat. It’s too cold not to wear my coat.” I was not murmuring for myself but for little children. If he reads the Bible, then the Bible says we should stand up for people who can’t stand up for themselves like little children and widows and older people. That was why I was murmuring.

Trash overflowing
While I would definitely agree with Chief of Police Bolen’s editorial regarding the many successes of the wonderful local flea market in Hillsville, as someone who goes to this on a regular basis and invites friends here, I do find it deplorable and embarrassing the amount of trash that is everywhere. Trashcans every year are overflowing in the streets. People actually, at least, pile their trash on top of the overflowing cans. It spills into the streets. Seriously, can you not just hire Boy Scouts or church groups or even just your sanitation department to empty these trashcans throughout the day? I think it is ridiculous that they are never emptied except apparently at night. To me, it is just not a good impression. While I agree, people are the problem because of the amount of trash, if you want to make all this money, by gosh you need to have it looking spotless throughout the day.
Messed up
I sure know we got a real messed up government and the Salem veterans medical center is the most messed up. I have been trying for over an hour to get the people on the phone and all I get is music played to me and nobody ever answers. What a messed up government we’ve got. I usually get my mail around 11:30 or 12 and here it is 5 minutes until 2 and I have never gotten my mail yet. Sometimes I wonder if the post office is messed up as the rest of our government.

Should apologize
I’m calling just to say that whoever wrote the piece and put it in the paper had but little to do or didn’t know what else to write about the bus driver who got a DUI and then died. Did you ever think this man had a child who was already hurt bad enough, losing his father? I think you should apologize.

Following through
I’m calling about the former bus driver who died before his DUI hearing. The obituary did not give a cause of death. They never do. They will either mention they died at home or in a hospital. This man also had a daughter and a wife and a son. And, there was no sense in this. As far as writing something about this, the man done died to pay his debt. I think you need to do a retraction of this and apologize at least to his family.
Editor’s note: The newspaper reported the charge and had an obligation to report a conclusion in the matter.

Check the mirror
Take a look at yourself. The people crying for Mayor Crowder to resign are doing just that — crying. The fact is Mayor Crowder was charged, not convicted. The people that are stirring the pot and buzzing around like busy little bees should stop and take a look at your own lives before passing judgment on this man. I’m sure that in some shape or fashion, you all have had a family member that has been charged with a crime and they were innocent until proven guilty. Did this mean they needed to lose their job? All I am trying to say is Mayor Crowder has done a fine job and we have an excellent town manager in Travis Jackson and Greg Bolen is doing a superb job as police chief. There are those who failed miserably with the town seats they held and instead of them laying in wait to cut Mayor Crowder’s throat, they should have nipped their faults and moved on with their pathetic lives.

Relax behind the wheel
I’d like to comment on all these people out here complaining about the speed limit. If they would slow down, take it easy, look how much money you would save on gas. Getting all worked up, there is no sense in that. Look at all the money you will save by not going to the doctor for your blood pressure. Main thing is to take it easy and relax. By the way, burning your brakes, drop a gear. It always works. Works with automatics, too.

Peyton Place
I’m sure the two appointed positions in the town of Hillsville are shaking in their boots, after the charges against Mayor Crowder, a town manager who is paid a salary of $93,000 a year with a month of vacation. It just keeps getting more like Peyton Place every day.

Try again later
I saw in the paper where Ms. Davis said Mayor Crowder is innocent until convicted. I, too, am an ordinary working citizen of Hillsville for over 50 years. I believe he should resign and maybe try again in the next election in Galax.

Pot smoking assailed
I just saw on TV where a little baby, three months old, died while the father was outside smoking pot and left the baby inside the car. Legislators that approved smoking of pot are very stupid, and people that smoke pot are very ignorant and stupid. Whether you want to believe it or not, pot is a dangerous drug and people that smoke it can end up on cocaine or other hard drugs.
Looking for help
I am a 75-year-old man and I have an Advantage plan to pay doctor bills. My doctor tells me to go to a doctor and if I don’t have the co-payment, the doctor won’t see me. I wonder if ObamaCare is going to help people like me. I never earned much more than minimum wage because of the trap I was in. I couldn’t get out of it for physical conditions, but I did work. Where are we supposed to go for help when we can’t pay that co-payment? Any help would be appreciated. I need to know. She sent me to an orthopedic doctor and they wouldn’t see me, a kidney doctor and they wouldn’t see me. Just because I didn’t have the co-payment. Should I just go on and kill myself or die or what?

Many uses
Your informant in Hillsville really checked out the hookah pipes? Because they are nothing but a water bong that people can use to smoke marijuana in. To me, that is telling people it is okay to get these bongs and smoke their pot.
Editor’s note: Well, as any stoner can tell you, it’s possible to make a bong out of just about anything. The hookahs at the Hillsville business will be used for smoking tobacco and other legal substances.

Messed up
I always knew Washington, D.C., was messed up. It’s really messed up now when they wouldn’t give the bikers a permit to ride for the people that were lost on 9/11 and they went ahead and give the Muslims a permit to do anything they want to do. Everything needs to be changed up there. New governors, new senators, new everything in Washington, D.C.
Editor’s note: Governors? In Washington? They actually work in their state capitols.

Different outcomes
Why is it so easy to get away with murder in the state of Florida? To me, Casey Anthony and George Zimmerman both got away with murder in the state of Florida. But, if you are carrying a little bit of dope down there, you are going to jail forever.

Lackluster turnout
Poor Mr. Crowder, in the court of public opinion. The uninformed people of Hillsville are also to be pitied. The charges against Mr. Crowder will be resolved in court. Most of our citizens have no idea of the positive improvements our new town council has implemented. This fact of complacency is proven by the lackluster number of concerned citizens that turn out twice a month for town council meetings. So, all concerned about our town, come on out to the meetings. The rest of you concerned, cast the first stone.
Never before
Over the years, many have served as honorable mayors of Hillsville. I have been voting for nearly 50 years. I believe each of the mayors I know served with dignity and selflessness for the town. I’m sure there were conflicts during their terms, but I can’t remember any having charges brought against them. There needs to be a code adopted that a mayor or councilman must resign if any unlawful act is performed by them.